The most senior doctor in the NHS has asked the public to use its services wisely and play their part over the coming days by being sensible in the hot weather as a three-day junior doctor walkout is set to begin.
NHS medical director Professor Sir Stephen Powis said: “The NHS is facing significant disruption this week with a three-day strike that is set to be exacerbated by the ongoing hot weather – with the number of people seeking emergency care increasing as temperatures rise.
“While thousands of appointments are likely to be rescheduled due to strike action, the NHS will continue to prioritise urgent and emergency care, but with the country in the midst of a heatwave, the public can play their part by being sensible in the warm weather.
“For the vulnerable and elderly, this includes drinking plenty of water, using sunscreen and avoiding prolonged periods in the sun or swimming in unsafe water – and please do also consider checking in on any vulnerable friends, family members or neighbours who may struggle with the heat and humidity. People with conditions such as asthma should continue to use their inhalers.
“Anyone who needs medical help should come forward as usual, using 111 online and calling 999 in an emergency.”